LAUREL, MD (October 1, 2003) - Several Maryland companies and one federal facility in the state were among those who earned accolades today for environmental actions and education activities taken in the last year. Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) Acting Secretary Kendl P. Philbrick presented the annual Businesses for the Bay Awards today at the National Wildlife Visitor Center-Patuxent Research Refuge in Laurel.
Businesses for the Bay is a voluntary program that encourages and recognizes pollution prevention practices at businesses, government facilities, and other organizations located within the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The awards recognize small, medium, and large businesses as well as government facilities that have successfully implemented pollution prevention projects in 2002.
"When the first Businesses for the Bay annual meeting was held four years ago, there were approximately 250 members," said Acting Secretary Philbrick. "Since then, membership has more than doubled and the cumulative results in terms of pounds of pollution reduced has grown from 222 million pounds in 1997 to 6.4 billion in 2002 at a cost savings of $313 million. Clearly, preventing pollution offers tremendous advantages to both the environment and to a company’s bottom line."
Atotech USA Inc., in Curtis Bay, earned an Outstanding Achievement Award for a Small Facility for their beneficial use of 140,000 gallons of hazardous wastewater resulting in an annual cost savings of $147,000.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Beltsville Research Center received the Significant Achievement Award for Federal Government for their Environmental Preferability and Affirmative Procurement Program.
"These awards are evidence of the type of innovation possible when organizations understand that strong environmental performance goes hand-in-hand with economic performance," the acting secretary added.
Maryland’s 139 Businesses for the Bay participants contribute mightily to the pollution prevention effort. Since 1996, members located in Maryland have reported the reduction and recycling of over 1.15 billion pounds of materials, saving these companies $16.5 million in operating and disposal costs. These wastes ranged from specific chemicals to air emissions and solid waste.
Acting Secretary Philbrick also recognized 11 Maryland manufacturers that completed an Environmental Management System (EMS) Implementation Program sponsored by MDE and Maryland Technology Extension Service. EMSs offer businesses a means of managing their environmental risks and evaluating their pollution prevention opportunities on a continual basis. Companies completing the EMS course were:
Recognition was also given to the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, Middle River Aircraft Systems, Rhodia Inc. and The Brick Companies for their the water conservation actions and techniques demonstrated during last year’s record drought.
A complete list of all the winners can be found online at: www.b4bay.org.
The awards ceremony was among the highlights of the Businesses for the Bay Annual Meeting. Paul Hawken, a world-renowned sustainability expert and author of “National Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution” rounded out the daylong event.
For more on Businesses for the Bay call 1-800-968-7229, ext. 719.
1800 Washington Boulevard, Baltimore, MD 21230